Skip to main content

Full text of "Virginia Wildlife"

See other formats

Bob Duncan 

ooking back over the year 2009, 1 want to 
express my sincere appreciation to our 
staff and board of directors for their hard 
work during a challenging period, as we — 
like all state agencies — felt the ripples of a 
forceful economic downturn. With much 
belt-tightening, we did accomplish many no- 
table goals and made great headway in our ef- 
forts to secure a strong, vibrant future for this 
agency. We move forward with special focus 
on saving money, on identifying revenue 
from new sources, and on making the most 
of the sportsman's dollar. 

Many of you know by now that we un- 
dertook a professional management study 
early in the year. Results of that review by 
outside experts have played a major role in 
our management decisions since, and have 
guided strategic changes put into place: 

• The hiring of Chief Operating Officer 
Matt Koch to oversee the day-to-day ad- 
ministration of our offices across the 

• An internal reorganization that resulted 
in a new Wildlife Resources Bureau 
headed up by David Whitehurst. That 
bureau now includes the divisions of 
fisheries, wildlife, and wildlife diversity; 

• Implementation of the first-ever Leader- 
ship Development Program, whose ini- 
tial class includes 40 fellows chosen from 
a pool of over 80 outstanding candidates. 
Their commitment to the long-term 
success of DGIF is evidenced by the 
many hours of study and problem-solv- 
ing exercises they have performed — all 
outside of their regular work duties; and 

• Renewed attention 
to working with our 
conservation part- 
ners across Virginia, 
in an effort to com- 
bine resources and 
maximize our in- 
vestments — includ- 
ing strategic land ac- 
quisitions and trans- 
fers that protect key 
wildlife habitat. 

Other projects also deserve mention here: 

• Laurel Bed Lake — construction that in- 
volved significant repairs to the lake dam 
on the Clinch Mountain Wildlife Man- 
agement Area. The work was necessary to 
maintain the 300-acre lake, which sup- 
ports trophy brook trout and small- 
mouth bass fisheries; 

• Coursey Springs Hatchery Renova- 
tion — an "extreme makeover" that will 
buoy trout production by 35% annually, 
from roughly 250,000 to about 350,000 
stocked fish; and 

• "Operation Dry Water" — ^A national law 
enforcement effort, conducted jointly 
with the Virginia Marine Resources 
Commission, to prevent boating under 
the influence (BUI). 

All the while, we continue our important 
work in wildlife management and related, 
law enforcement activities across the Com- 

I hope that 20 1 will be a bright year for 
you, and I appreciate your continued sup- 
port of our mission. 

Mission Statement 

To manage Virginia's wildlife and inland fish to maintain optimimi populations of all species to serve the needs of the Commonwealth; 
To provide opportunitv' for all to enjoy wildlife, inland fish, hoating and related outdoor recreation ;md to work diligently to safeguard the 
rights of the people to hunt, fish and hanest game as provided for in the Constitution of Virginia; To promote safety for persons ;md prop- 
erty in connection with boating, hunting and fishing; To provide education;il outreach programs and materials that foster an awareness of 
and appreciation for Virginia's fish and wildlife resources, their habitats, and hunting, fishing, and boating opportunities. 

Dedicated to the Conservation of Virginia's Wildlife and Natural Resources 


Commonwealth of Virginia 
Timothy M. Kaine, Governor 



Subsidized this publication 

Secretary of Natural Resources 
L. Preston Bryant, Jr. 

Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries 

Bob Duncan 
Executive Director 

Members of the Board 

Ward Burton, Halifax 
Sherry Smith Crumley, Buchanan 
William T. Greer, Jr., Norfolk 
James W. Hazel, Oakton 
Randy J. Kozuch, Alexandria 
John W. Montgomery, Jr., Sandston 
Mary Louisa Pollard, Irvington 
Richard E. Railey, Courtland 
F. Scott Reed, Jr., Manakin-Sabot 
Thomas A. Stroup, Fairfax 
Charles S. Yates, Cleveland 

Magazine Staff 

Sally Mills, Editor 

Lee Walker, Ron Messina, JuUa Dixon, 

Contributing Editors 

Emily Pels, Art Director 

Carol Kushlak, Production Manager 

Mike Pinder, Jeff TroUinger, Staff Contributors 

Color separations and printing by 
Progress Printing, Lynchburg, VA. 

Virginia WiUilife (ISSN 0042 6792) is published 
monthly by the Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries. Send all subscription orders and 
address changes to Virginia Wildlife, P. O. Box 7477, 
Red Oak, Iowa 51591-0477. Address all other com- 
munications concerning this publication to Virginia 
Wildlife, P. O. Box 11104, 4010 West Broad Street, 
Richmond, 'Virginia 23230-1104. Subscription rates 
are $12.95 tor one year, $23.95 for two years; $4.00 
per each back issue, subject to availability. Out-of- 
countr\' rate is $24.95 for one year and must be paid 
in U.S. funds. No refunds for amounts less than 
$5.00. To subscribe, call toll-free (800) 710-9369. 
POSTMASTER: Please send all address changes to 
Virginia Wildlife, RO. Box 7477, Red Oak, Iowa 
51591-0477. Postage for periodicals paid at 
Richmond, Virginia and additional entry offices. 

Copyright 2009 by the Virginia Department of 
Game and Inland Fisheries. All rights reser\'ed. 

The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries shall 
afford to all persons an equal access to Department 
programs and facilities without regard to race, 
color, religion, national origin, disability, sex, or 
age. If you belie\e that you have been discriminat- 
ed against in any program, activity or facility, 
please write to: Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries, ATTN: Compliance Officer, (4010 
West Broad Street.) RO. Box 11104, Richmond, 
Virginia 23230-1104. 

"This publication is intended for general informa- 
tional purposes only and evers- effort has been 
made to ensure its accuracy. The information con- 
tained herein does not serve as a legal representa- 
tion of fish and wildlife laws or regulations. The 
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries 
does not assume responsibility for any change in 
dates, regulations, or information that may occur 
after publication." 


Mixed Sources 



About the cover: 

A sought-after 
yame bird, the 
ruffed grouse 
( Bonosa umhellus) 
has met with 
some challenges 
oflate. Lossof 
early succession 
habitat and young 
forests-created by 
timber cutting- 
has contributed 
to their woes. 
See story on 
page 8. 

V \V] 




For subscriptions, 

circulation problems 

and address changes 



12 issues for $12.95 
24 issues for $23.95 

if. Mystery of the Saint Marys 
by John Ross 
Journey with us as we probe the history of a once 
abundant trout stream. 

C| Improving the Hunt for Grouse 
by Bruce higram 
One hunter considers the decline oi grouse and 
what it will take to bring them back. 

1^ Celebrating the Art of Custom 
ft Rods 

by Beth Hester 
Meet entrepreneur and master craftsman, 
Wayne Fowlkes. 


Fishing With a Passion 
by Virginia Shepherd 

Virginia's angler recognition program has had a 
close relationship with this Master Angler. 

1SI Mothers & Daughters 
IC Bond Outdoors 
by Gail Brown 
The success of this program is measured in many 
ways — including repeat customers. 

nn Be WUd! Live Wild! Grow Wild! 

^Ai by Spike Knuth 

Madtoms and Other Little Known Bullheads 


Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries Financial Summary, 
Fiscal Year 2009 


A Duck Hunter's Journal 
«RI Journal 
99 Photo Tips 
94 Recipes 









-^ •* * -^ 

'" ""-"W^ 




Story and photos 
by John Ross 

The why of trout streams fasci- 
nates me as much as, and some- 
times more than, the fishing it- 
self. From the 1950s into the early 
1980s, the Saint Marys River held a 
stellar reputation for large rainbows, 
browns, and brook trout. Depart- 
ment biologists Larry Mohn and Paul 
Bugas report having shocked up 
'bows of 14 inches and brookies to 11 
or 12. 

Well known, of course, are the rav- 
ages of acid rain and snow that seem 
to have eliminated from the Saint 
Marys rainbows and browns, species 
not as tolerant of low pH as brookies. 
Geology and trout go hand in hand. 
Yet the formation that underlies most 
of the river's watershed — Antietam 
quartzite — offers as much acid 
buffering as a glass cruet provides for 
vinegar. So why, for a generation or 
so, did the Saint Marys blossom into 
such a famous fishery? 

To help unravel the mystery, I 
tracked down Michael Upchurch, a 
recently retired member of the state 
geological survey. Late last Novem- 
ber he rendezvoused with Dawn 
Kirk, fisheries biologist with the U.S. 
Forest Service, and me in the parking 
lot at the foot of the trail leading up 
the creek. It's so narrow in late fall 
that I can't, for the life of me, think of 
it as a river. 

How long, 1 asked Michael, had 
the Saint Marys drained this valley 
on the western shoulder of the Blue 
Ridge? He opined tliat he wasn't real- 
ly sure, but probably somewhere be- 
tween 10 million and 30 million 

I made reference to accepted 
dom that the Appalachians wen 
once as high as the Alps. Michael said 
he didn't think so. The difference in 




elevation between where we stood 
on the valley floor and the crest of the 
ancestral Blue Ridge would probably 
be similar to what we saw that late 
fall morning. 

Tempting though it is to believe 
that our mountains were taller than 
the Rockies when thrust up as conti- 
nental drift crushed North America 
and Africa together roughly 300 mil- 
lion years ago, the grinding collision 
occurred at an imperceptible speed. 
As the new mountain chain was ris- 
ing, its rocks were being eaten away 
oh-so-slowly by rain and freeze and 
thaw just as they are today. 

What's left is mainly Antietam. 
This hard rock was named by a geol- 
ogist who identified its outcrops 
along the creek that flows through 


the battlefield in Maryland. He must 
have been a Yankee. Blue coats 
named their battles after streams; the 
men in butternut preferred places 
where people lived. A Confederate 
would have called the rock Sharps- 
burg after the town nearest the blood- 
iest single day's fight in the Civil War. 

Whatever its politics, the rock was 
deposited some 600 million years ago 
in a shallow sea as a fine, clean sand 
into which SkoUthus linearis, a saltwa- 
ter worm, drilled vertical burrows. 
Their fossil tubes are plentiful in 
rocks along the river. 

The Saint Mar}'s follows along a 
minor fault, which is plainly visible 
where the river runs hard against its 
south bank just below the lower falls 
about two miles up the trail. The geo- 
logic structure creates deep pools in 
the gorge. That's one of the reasons. 
Dawn maintained, why the stream is 
capable of nurturing big trout. 


Above: Geologist Mike Upchurch shows U.S. Forest 
Service fisiieries biologist Dawn Kirk the fault in the 
rocks which determines the path of the Saint Marys. 
Below: Though small, brook trout are the most 
resilient of Virginia's trout and are the state's 
native fish. 


i i^^ :ii 

to coalesce into tough black nodules 
of ore, some as big as basketballs. 
The ore fed, in the early 1800s, a trio 
of furnaces near the hamlet of Vesu- 
vius, so called by Italian ironworkers 
because fountains of sparks spewing 
upwards from the smelters reminded 
them of volcanoes back home. Good 
Catholics were these mongers, and it 
is likely that they named the river 
after their blessed saint. 

Michael wanted to have a look at 
the iron mines, so we chose the south 
path where the Saint Marys' trail 
forks. Up along Sugartree Branch we 
hiked, marveling at the gorgeous 
plunge pools that we knew held 
brook trout, though they were well 

So habitat was plentiful, but why, 
with its almost sterile bedrock, does 
the Saint Marys produce abundant 
caddis, stoneflies, mayflies, and the 
minnows that eat them — all diet for 
trout? Dawn's answer: These insects 
thrive in clear, cold water, with beds 
free of chokiiig sediments in water- 
sheds where soils buffer precipita- 
tion enough to keep acidity within an 
acceptable range. 

I, with my ancient, freshman geol- 
ogy class, assumed that the lens of 
Shady dolostone from which iron 

was mined on the plateau to the 
south of the river was responsible for 
the buffering. After all, dolostone is a 
kissing cousin to limestone, from 
which trout-rich spring creeks flow. 
This once thick lens of carbonate rock 
had been weathered into a deep bed 
of clay. Rain, percolating down 
through the clay, neutralized acid 
precipitation and fed into the Saint 
Marys, allowing trout to thrive. At 
least, that's what I thought. 

Weathering of the Shady also al- 
lowed iron and manganese minerals 

Above: Round nodules of iron ore litter the 
trail from Sugartree to the Pulaski Mine. 
Below: Tubes that saltwater worms burrowed 
into fine beach sands 600 million years ago 
are easily seen in the Saint Marys bedrock. 

On the lower end of Sugartree, neatly 
laid stone marks foundations of the 
flume that carried ore from Pulaski Mine 
to the rail siding along the Saint Marys. 

camouflaged by the mat of sodden 
leaves carpeting the bed of the 

Skipping across Sugartree on 
rocks flat as paving stones, we began 
the trek up to the mine. Angular 
blocks of Antietam gnawed the soles 
of our boots. Ten minutes later, 
Michael stopped and scuffed the trail 
with his toe. The path had smoothed, 
and the dirt was brown and pebbly. 
We'd just climbed up onto the Shady 
formation, he said. We'd gained 200 
feet in elevation and covered maybe 
20 million years in geologic time. 

"Should be a mine near here," he 
said. And with that, he headed off the 
trail through a tangle of scrubby leaf- 
less oak, laurel, and greenbrier and 
into a deep gash in the mountain's 
side. Dawn and I scampered to keep 
up. We found him standing stock still, 
head cocked. 


"I can hear voices, men calling to 
each other and the sounds of machin- 
ery," he said. I heard them too: creak- 
ing gears of steam shovels clawing 
into the ore-laden clay banks and the 
rumbling crash when they dropped 
their loads into waiting trucks. 

Twenty minutes further brought 
us up onto the plateau next to a tipple 
where ore was screened and washed 
and fed into the 2,200-foot flume that 
sluiced it down the mountain to gon- 
dolas waiting on the narrow gauge 
rail line by the Saint Marys. To the 
north spread the flat dry tailings 
pond, now favored by hunters who 
camp. By the eve of World War II, 
mining was all but finished here. Fol- 
lowing the route of the flume, we 
headed back down to the Saint 

Over the next few days, the why 
of the Saint Marys tugged at me. Re- 
stocked with rainbows and browns 
in 1936, the river had gained promi- 
nence among anglers by the late 
1960s. Thirty years later, research by 
Dan Downey, Mark Hudy, Larry 
Mohn, and Paul Bugas confirmed 
that the river's famed rainbows and 

Why had it become a great 
trout stream in the first place? 
That's what I wanted to know 

browns were gone and only one class 
year of brook trout, Virginia's state 
fish, remained. Why had it become a 
great trout stream in the first place? 
That's what I wanted to kiiow. 

Rick Webb, hydrologist with the 
Virginia Trout Stream Sensitivity 
Stutiy, had the answer. Thin beds of 
soil weathered from basalt, shales, 
and sandstones cap the south rim of 
the Saint Marys watershed. The soils 
initially contained enough alkalinity 
to neutralize the onslaught of acid 
rain. Though they had been in place 
for millennia, in only 50 years — less 
than a flicker of the geologic eye — 
their acid neutralizing capacity was 

Right: Dropped from a hopper swinging 
beneath a helicopter, limestone sands miti- 
gated acid rain and restored wild brookies 
to the river. 

With funding from several state 
and federal agencies and from energy 
company Dominion, dumping of 
limestone sands by helicopter into 
headwater tributaries in 1999 instant- 
ly reduced acidification of the Saint 
Marys and initiated an immediate re- 
bound in brook trout populations. 
The river was limed again in 2005. 

Despite this assist, life in the Saint 
Marys is a tough swim even for 
brookies, the hardiest of wild trout. 
The fishing is good, but not nearly as 
great as it once was. 

Along with acid deposition, the 
last 50 years have not been kind to 
fish. Camille dumped 22 inches of 
rain overnight in August, 1969. 
Agnes hit in 1972. Fran strvick in 1996. 
Isabel roared through in 2003. 

With each hvirricane, tliese lovely 
rivulets — across which Mike, Dawn, 
and I hopped that November after- 
noon — rage deep, combine with furi- 
ous force, and blast through the 
river's gorge in a tumult that camiot 
be imagined. Boulders crash into 
each other, rumbling downstream 
like runaway ore trains. The river 
bottom is scoured hound-tooth clean. 
Yet somehow brookies survive. □ 

Former cimir of the Virginia Council of Trout Uii- 
I'unitcd, John Ross is a writer living in Llpperville. 
His most recent book is Rivers of Restoration 
(Skyhorse Publishing, 200S). 


Sportsmen and 
work together 
to create 

by Bruce Ingram 

I never pursued grouse until '88, so I 
have no first-hand experience with 
what some Virginians believe was 
the 'golden age' of upland birding 
when two, three, or more flushes per 
hour and full game bags were com- 
mon. But in the late 1980s and early 
1990s when I prowled the mountains of 
Botetourt, Craig, and Roanoke counties 
for ruffs — most of the time, without a 
dog — I often flushed a bird or two per 
hour and, even with my slow reflexes 
and lackluster wingshooting skills, 
would take one home every now and 

To demonstrate how poor the pas- 
time has become. Eagle Rock farmer 
Jack Leffel and I hosted Rick Busch, as- 
sistant director of the wildlife division, 
and Dennis LaBare, an upland bird ad- 
vocate from Upper Tract, West Virginia, 
for a Botetourt outing this past January. 
And when at the end of the day our 
total tally was three flushes, one shot 
taken, and one bird killed by LaBare, 
Jack and I were relieved that the action 

had been as good as that. We had feared 
worse, based on previous excursions. 

So, then, what is being done and 
what can we all do to make grouse 
hunting better on state and national 
forests and private lands across the Old 

"We like to thiiik that on our state 
wildlife management areas (WMAs), 
we are active in the forest management 
kind of rotation that we ought to be 
practicing," says Busch. "Annually, we 
are cutting and manipulating and culti- 
vating about 350 acres out of the 200,000 
acres we own, but we would like to be 
doing at least twice that much. 

"Annually, we also practice pre- 
scribed burning on about 1,000 acres of 
open land and at about the same rate in 
our forests. And the Department 
(DGIF) maintains another 1,000 acres or 
so in various kinds of openings, 
whether they be from farming or from 
plantings of native warm season grass- 
es, for example." 

Busch adds that the DGIF is trying to 
shift away from intensive farming on its 
WMAs, practicing less cultivation of 

Improving MieHui 

©Bruce Ingram 


row crops and more disking and pre- 
scribed burns. The goal always is to 
maintain or increase habitat diversity. 
Interestingly, the Department has 
some very intriguing, future goals. 

"We would like to be able to 
demonstrate certain kinds of habitat 
culture, especially for quail, on our 
WMAs," continues Busch. "I envision 
some kind of extension-service-st)'le 
outreach so that on organized visits, 
private landowners could come to our 
WMAs and see how they could copy 
what we are doing. 

"On our western management 
areas, most of our work is designed to 
create several stages of forest diversi- 
ty. We haven't had the opportunity^ to 
go into educational outreach with 
landowners. 1 would like to see a pro- 
gram where landowners come to a 
western WMA and actually see us in 
the process of habitat improvement. 
Anything we or a landowner would 
do to benefit grouse and quail will 
help a vast number of game and 
nongame animals." 

"Anything we or a landowner 
would do to benefit grouse and 
quail will help a vast number of 
game and nongame animals." 

—Rick Busch 

One-on-One Efforts 

Busch wants landowners to know 
that all district biologists stand will- 
ing to work one-on-one with them, 
which he emphasizes is a primary job 
of the staff and "still fifty percent" of 
what they do. Whether it is efforts 
like the Deer Management Assis- 
tance Program or improving habitat 
for deer, turkeys, grouse, quail, or 
songbirds, state biologists are all well 

Ruffed grouse, of course, have 
some specific requirements. 

t for Grouse 

This regenerating clearcut on the author's Craig County land wi[[ soon provide 
quality grouse habitat. 

"As we all know, grouse depend 
on a young aged forest," says Busch. 
"They do best when a forest is be- 
tween five and 30 years old, but they 
need more than just timber harvest- 
ing; good cover for nesting, protected 
overhead cover for broods, over- 
grown fence rows, and weedy-seedy 
places, for example. Timber cutting 
helps provide many of these needs. 

"One of the things that will al- 
ways make improving grouse num- 
bers in Virginia more difficult, as op- 
posed to northern states, is that our 
state will always have to experience 
ideal conditions just to have a good 
population. That fact, plus poor 
hatches in 2005 and 2006 and the re- 
cent droughts that reduced the 
amount of protein — or bugs — avail- 
able, and it's no wonder that Vir- 
ginia's grouse population has come 
under stress." 

Jack Leffel sees another problem 
in that the percent of grouse habitat 
we have left is so much less than 
what formerly existed. Rick Busch 

"The ruffed grouse has become 
marginalized in many places," Busch 
explains. "Just creating the right 

habitat alone is not enough . . . there 
have to be grouse around to move 
into that habitat, and sometimes 
there aren't any." 

Grouse in National Forests 

The George Washington and Jeffer- 
son National Forest encompasses 
some 1.7 million acres in the com- 
monwealth. In the past, this public 
land became a bastion for state fool 
hen fanciers, but unfortunately, be- 
cause of the misguided efforts of ex- 
tremists who demand that no timber 
cutting take place on this public land, 
bird populations from grouse to 
towhees and from warblers to spar- 
rows have plummeted. 

"If this trend of not managing the 
national forest continues, then in 
about 40 years a major portion of the 
trees will die at the same time," says 
Busch. "That means, since many of 
the trees dying will be red oaks, that 
about 90 percent of the hard mast will 
also disappear and will be gone for 
about 40 to 50 years. Timber cutting 
will have to be done on a major scale 
to thwart this scenario. 

"The public needs to be educated 
on the effects of no Hmber manage- 

Rick Busch (R) and Dennis LoBare 
admire a grouse that the latter shot 
during the hunt. 

ment, and the fact that national forest 
personnel have been hamstrung. 
One of tlie objectives for tlie national 
forest should be to have a healthy, di- 
verse forest with sound manage- 
ment — and that is not the case today." 


Regardless of where grouse live 
on federal, state, or private land in 
Virginia, the effect of hunting on this 
game bird appears to be minimal, as- 
serts biologist Gary Norman, who 
monitors the state's grouse popula- 

"The main thing that I would add 
is the conclusion reached from the 
Appalachian Cooperative Grouse Re- 
search Project that grouse hunting ap- 
pears to be compensatory, and that 
sport hunting, at current harvest lev- 
els, does noi appear to be limiting 
grouse populations in the region," 
emphasizes Norman. 

Where Do We Go From Here? 

I have heard much misinformation 
about why Virginia's grouse num- 
bers have drastically declined, from 
the absurd — that wild turkeys are 
eating grouse eggs (turkeys don't 
even know what a grouse egg looks 
like) — to the ridiculous, that coyotes 
are eating all the grouse. (In reality, 
they prey mostly on creatures such as 
groundhogs, mice, and rabbits). 

The truth is that for grouse num- 
bers to improve, state sportsmen and 
rural landowners will have to work 
together to improve and create 
grouse and wildlife-friendly habitat. 
For his part, Dennis LaBare continues 
to lobby to have more timber cutting 
and habitat manipulation in our na- 
tional forests. And Jack Leffel has la- 
bored to develop native warm season 
grasses, such as switchgrass, on his 
Botetourt land. 

On my 287-acre tract of land in 
Craig County, I created linear 
clearcuts of 3.6 and 6.5 acres in 2004 
and another 11 acres in 2005. In anoth- 
er few years, I hope to hunt aiffs on 
those regenerating stands. 1 also plan 
to conduct a 15-acre cut in a few 
years. Only after efforts such as these, 
by many throughout Virginia, will 
grouse numbers improve. D 

Erucc Ingram has authored many guide hooks, 
most recently Fly and Spin Fishing for River 
Smallmouths ($1925). Contact him at 
hejngram&^juno.comfor more inforniatio)!. 






Custom rods for any occasion and any weight have captured the attention of anglers 
far and wide. 

''WJten you work with 
your hands, you are a 
laborer. When you work 
with your hands and 
mind, you are a 
But when you work 
with your hands and 
mind, heart and soul. . . 
you are an artist." 

-Author unknown 

essay by Beth Hester 

For over 55 years, Norfolk native 
Wayne Fowlkes has been con- 
structing high-end fishing rods 
for both fresh and saltwater. Techni- 
cally, his rods are top-notch, but what 
elevates them to an altogether higher 
level, is the meticulous threadwork 
that transforms those rods into works 
of sporting art. 

Though many local and national 
celebrities like Loretta Lymi and Cur- 
tis Strange own or have commis- 
sioned his rods, Wayne laughs and 
fondly remembers the first, unas- 
suming rod he ever built: "I was 14 

©Wayne Fowlkes 

years old, and made myself a surf rod 
using a length of Calcutta bamboo. 
The reel was held onto the butt sec- 
tion by two radiator hose clamps. I 
just had a passion for fishing, but 
none of us really had any money back 
then, so we'd try to do the best we 
could with whatever materials we 
could scrounge up... 1 think the 
whole rig cost about two dollars." 

Wayne works his magic from in- 
side a Virginia Beach workshop, 
which is loaded with blanks of all 
sizes in various stages of construc- 
tion. The shop is a fishing lair of sorts, 
crammed floor to rafters with fisliing 
memorabilia, antique reels, old pho- 
tographs, fish replicas, tools and 
tackle, bobbins filled with thread, 
and framed covers of the Gudebrod 
company catalogs which, since 1982, 
have been graced with examples of 
his innovative custom threadwork. 

Wayne explains. "David Lagrand 
saw examples of some of my work in 
a tackle shop, and made inquiries. 
Gudebrod liked my work so much 
that they began to use my butt wraps 
and thread designs to showcase what 
could be achieved artistically with 
their various products. 

Wayne continues, "My alliance 
with Gudebrod and other compo- 
nent manufacturers is helpful to the 
craft. It's a lot of fun to see what kinds 
of dyes and threads the manufactur- 
ers will come up witli, and to inte- 
grate some of those materials into my 
design plans. I get a big kick out of a 
new design that turns out even better 
tlian I'd expected, and 1 feel very for- 
tunate that I have the ability to visual- 
ize what a specific pattern will look 
like on the finished rod." 



A masterful artist, Wayne Fowikes 
produces 350-400 custom rods a year. 

Wayne is known for his signature 
black and gold wrap combinations, a 
color mix he says holds up well 
under harsh conditions. He is espe- 
cially proud of the Fishnet design he 
developed, as well as a special design 
he calls The Predator, which is a suc- 

cession of gold, diamond-shaped 
fish, chasing after smaller bait fish. 
Other patterns include a St. John's 
Cross, with a star radiating from the 
center, a series of Native American 
thunderbirds emerging from red 
flames, and themes employing 
bright, holographic thread. Wayne 
will build Ciistom rods for any occa- 
sion and recently completed a roci for 
a Virginia Tech graduate, complete 
with university logo and colors. 

In any given year, Wayne builds 
350 to 400 custom rods, filling com- 
missions from individual clients and 
large orders from local charter boat 
fleets. Wayne's rods are Ccindy-apple 
delicious, sporting deep, lacc^uer-like 
finish coats. He can build heavy-duty 
heavers and boat rods, or delicate fly 
rods capable of casting a Mvirray's 
Mr. Rapidmi Special to a hungry bass 
or trout. Despite such a heavy work- 

©Wayne Fowikes 

load, Wayne manages to display a re- 
freshingly ironic sense of humor. De- 
scribing a custom rod built for Presi- 
dent George Bush, Sr., Wayne says, "I 
knew the president was expanding 
his fishing repertoire, and well... it 
just didn't seem politically correct for 
him to be trying to use a bass rod for 
bluefish." □ 

Beth Hester is a writer and freelance photogra- 
pher from Portsmouth. Her passions include 
reading, shooting, kayaking, fishing, tying salt- 
water flies, and tending her herb garden. 

Wayne Fowikes Custom Tackle: 
Rod & Reel Repair, 
Specializing in Custom Rods 
1637 Wildwood Drive 
Virginia Beach, Virginia 23454 

Fishing with 

by Virginia Shepherd 

"Fishing keepis me focused. It keeps 
me from becoming complacent. 
It's something I love as much as life 

-Stephen Miklandric 

/n 1986, 19-year-old Stephen 
Miklandric caught his first ci- 
tation fish on the James River. 
It was a 20-inch smallmouth bass 
weighing 4 lbs. 4 oz. It would take 
him three more years — more than 
150 weekends of fishing — before he 
caught his second trophy. Today, 
more than 20 years later, the 43-year- 
old Miklandric has earned his place 
as one of Virginia's finest anglers. 

Last year, he broke all records for 
catching trophy fish in Virginia, land- 

ing 148 citations in 14 species and 
earning the title of Angler of the Year. 
He joined the small circle of anglers 
who have attained Level 3 Master 
Angler statiis, and is but one species 
away from reaching the final Level FV 
Master Angler, a title which recog- 
nizes anglers skilled enough to catch 
a trophy fish of virtually every 
species of game fish in Virginia. 

Not only can Miklandric catch tro- 
phy fish, he can catch them consis- 
tently. He has been recognized by the 
Department as an Expert Angler in 
sunfish, largemouth bass, yellow 
perch, chain pickerel, crappie, long- 
nosed gar, rainbow trout, brook 
trout, blue catfish, and channel cat- 
fish. Furthermore, Miklandric holds 
twelve Virginia Angler of the Month 
titles comprised of nine different fish 

Nevertheless, Miklandric is not 
one to take his angling achievements 
for granted. "Lady Luck and Mother 
Nature have to sign off on every sin- 
gle trophy," he says. "No matter how 
good you get." 

But come on, now. How does he do 

"People who become good at fish- 
ing are people who want to become 
good at fishing," says Miklandric. 
"Because, fishing is a hard teacher. If 
someone's goal is just to catch cita- 
tions, they're probably not going to 
remain fishing very long. Fishing is 
very, very brutal and unforgiving in 
the beginning. But when it starts to 
give back, it's exponential. Only after 
you have five or six years of experi- 
ence on a lake or a stream and you're 
able to compare five different I^ebru- 
arys. Mays, and Octobers can you 

Shown here, citation winners from the 
Virginia Angler Recognition Program. 

"Remember, just because you see fish on 
your fish finder doesn't mean they're 
hungry. It doesn't mean they're eating. 
After all, we're not eating every second of 
the day. Neither are the fish. " 

Stephen Miklandnc with citation stnped bass. 

begin to weed out what doesn't work 
and remember what does work. Cita- 
tions come through doing the right 
things that you've learned from expe- 
rience and from other fishermen. It 
comes from doing it, and doing it, 
and doing it. That's all there is to it. 
That's really the way it works." 

Simple, huh? Well, not really. The 
bottom line is that Miklandric be- 
lieves the difference between a good 
angler and a great angler is persever- 
ance — years of it — along with an ob- 

sessive attention to detail. For 12 
years, Miklandric has carried along a 
video camera on his fishing trips as 
his fishing log, recording every small 
detail of the fishing day. "Fish leave 
clues," he says. "Someone will tell 
me, 'Oh, I was fishing for bass but 
caught this bowfin by accident.' I'll 
say, 'No. You didn't. There was a rea- 
son why that bowfin was there and 
there was a reason he took your bait. 
Now figure it out.'" 

Miklandric says the details are 
even more important the minute you 
land a trophy fish. "When you get a 
citation of any species, you have to 
stop^ and remember and record in 
your mind exactly what you did and 
where you were if you want to re- 
peat it. But it's a hard thing to do 
when the adrenaline is pumping 
through you. It's easy to get so 
caught up in the fish that you forget 
what you did to catch it." 





^.i»?^ .s' 




Virginia Angler 
Recognition Program 

"I think the program's fantastic. I know what 
it's meant to me over the years. It's a place 
where you can get recognized for fishing, and 
there aren't many places where you can do 
that either as a kid or as an adult. It brings 
everyone together. " 

-Stephen Miklandric 

Virginians catch and record an average of 
6,000 trophy-size freshwater fish annually. 
DGIF recognizes their accomplishments in a 
variety of ways, including Trophy Freshwa- 
ter Fish Awards, Master Angler Awards, Ex- 
pert Angler Awards, and Angler of the 
Month and Year Awards. Go to 
for more information. 

Stephen Miklandric with citation walleye. 

Which details does Miklandric 
find important? Everything. From 
time of year to water depth, to cloud 
cover, to the difference between an 8- 
inch and a 4-inch worm, Miklandric 
finds no detail insignificant. He has 
found that the details recorded from 
years of fishing a body of water yield 
patterns which are the keys to crack- 
ing the codes on really big fish. 

"Fish are very much creatures of 
habit," he says. "So I cycle through 
the calendar year gathering informa- 
tion and applying it to the next sea- 

But even if you've cracked the 
codes on the big fish and you've got 
years of experience under your belt, 
there are no guarantees. "Sometimes 
fish don't bite and you don't know 
why. That's just the way it is. But I've 
found that more times than not, they 
do bite when they're supposed to, if 
you know what you're doing." 

Stephen Miklandric 

Miklandric admits that to be a tro- 
phy angler requires a passion that will 
carry you through the inevitable disap- 
pointing days. Even today, there are 
days (not many) when Miklandric him- 
self has been known to get skunked. 
But when Miklandric pulls into a boat 
ramp on the Suffolk Lakes and backs 
his trailer into the water and he's look- 
ing into his rear-view mirror, some- 
thing happens. At the moment when 
the boat separates from the trailer and 
begins to drift away, he says, "The lake 
takes me over. There is no trace in my 
mind or in my heart or in my soul or in 
my spirit of any of the worries 1 carried 
with me that day. I forget who 1 am. 
Then 1 look at my graph and try to fig- 
ure things out. I know who lives here. 
Now, let's go knock on some doors." U 

Virginia Shepherd is a former editor of Virginia 
Wildlife. She has been a freelance writer for the 
past 12 years 


'If it sw'h 

Trophy Blue Cats in the Lower James: 
The Original Couch Potatoes 

"Big blue cats wilL sit in the same hole for three 
months or more out of the year, and they're huge 
because they're old and smart. They face downriv- 
er when the tide is coming in and gobble up as 
many shad as they can until they're bursting at 
the seams. Then the tide will stop and they'll sit 
there and go 'Ah, that was good. I'm not eatin' 
nuthin'. I don't care what you throw at me.' " 

Gotta love 'em: Carp and Gar at 
Lake Western Branch 

"I love carp. They are strong and such ferocious 
fighters. They are like bulldogs. What's not to like 
about them? Maybe they're not all that pretty, but 
if you've ever seen a long-nosed gar, they're not 
either. Some of my fishing friends tease me for 
fishing for them. They say 'Oh, you're fishing for 
trash fish.' I say there's no such thing as a trash 
fish. They all have their place of respect with me." 

Monster Largemouth Bass 

"There are two types of largemouth bass: those 5 
lbs. and less and those more than 5 lbs. And they 
act like two totally different fish. They differ in 
how they eat and in how aggressive they are. For 
example, if you fish around the shoreline at Briery 
Creek Lake in Prince Edward County, you can 
catch all the 12- to 14-inch bass you want on a 2- 
inch rapala or spinner. But the big largemouth 
bass are out on the main lake points and they're 
eating big bait. That's because the big bass are 
big-time lazy. And they're smart. They know. 
They've taken every bait known to man and 
they're tired of it. Big bass would prefer to chase 
down a big giant shad, swallow it whole and not 
have to eat for 8 hours. So, I go fishing for big 
bass at Briery in mid-February. I fish deep and 
know that I'll only get 3 or 4 strikes the entire day 
from sunup to sundown and probably only land 
two fish. However, those two fish stand a very 
good chance of being truly huge." 

Trophy Trout 

"Trout can be really finicky. You can sit there and 
watch them, and throw everything in the world at 
'em without a bite. Then, when they decide to 
eat, it's like 'What did I do?' I didn't do anything. 
The reason anyone catches a big, giant trout is 
because that trout /e/t like eating. There is no 
major skill; no black magic about it." 

Tapping into the magic of outq 

'7 really believe being in 
nature provides a sense 
of creativity and 
well-being. There's 
something primal about 
knowing you can take 
care of yourself. I want 
to give those things to 
my daughter." 

-Beth Nease 

story and photos 
by Gail Brown 

ong before the decorations 
came out, the lights were un- 
tangled, and the tree was put 
up, young Judith Quinn began plan- 
ning her mother's Christmas sur- 
prise — a photo album of their time 
together at the Department's Mother 
& Daughter Outdoors weekend. The 
album is Judith's effort to capture, 
through photos, the adventures they 
shared kayaking, fishing, shooting, 
and hiking as they challenged them- 
selves and each other to master basic 
survival skills. Today the album sits 
proudly on Brenda Quinn's dresser, 
not really noticed in each day's con- 
fusion, but sure to be missed if re- 
moved from sight. It is, Brenda says, 
the best gift she has ever received. 

Although new photos will be 
shared around the holiday table this 
December, it won't be until August of 
2010 that the Quinns will again travel 
to the Holiday Lake 4-H Center in 
Appomattox County for their 4th 

Above: Learning how to kayak safely 
makes sense. Learning with friends and 
family makes it special. 
Right: Survival classes are important 
and popular. 

(and the Department's 10th) Mother 
& Daughter Outdoors weekend. Most 
of the friends they have made over 
the years will be there, too — several 
returning as instructors — and while 
some classes will change, many fa- 
vorites will remain. And that's a good 
thing, as Judith is countiiig down the 



3r experiences 

focusl Instructor Jesse Ebron uses pushpins in the target to teach participants to 
"iool< at the smallest part you can see. " 

few remaining years until she turns 
16 and can finally take the class she's 
been waiting for: how to maneuver 
an ATV! Judith's "camp friend," 
Amber Nease, will have grandmoth- 
er Val and mother Beth there to help 
cheer them on when the girls take 
some time from the high ropes, 3-D 
archery, and shotgun to learn how to 
safely negotiate tiirns and take their 
ATV over obstacles. 

Beth Nease is one of the many at- 
tendees to come to the Mother & 
Daughter Outdoors weekend after first 
attending the Department's Beconwig 
ail Outdoors Woman in Virginia 
(BOW), a precursor and model for the 
mother and daughter program. 
While many states have programs for 
women over 18, a weekend dedicat- 
ed to promoting mother and daugh- 
ter outdoor experiences for those 9 

years and older remains uniquely 
Virginian. It is also one of the most 
popular programs the Department 
provides, with attendance growing 
each year faster than kids can drop 
their backpacks and yell, "Ready!" 

"The popularity of the program is 
no surprise, as it tapped into a previ- 
ously underserved population of 
hunters anti wildlife enthusiasts," 
states Jimmy Mootz, DGIF outreach 
coordinator. Like the BOW program, 
the Mother & Daughter Outdoors event 
provides women, even those with lit- 
tle or no experience, an opportvmity 
to learn outdoor skills and meet oth- 
ers with similar interests. Activities 
center on hunting, fishing, boating, 
and wildlife watching, the four cor- 
nerstones of all DGIF educational 
programs. Karen Holson, outdoor 
education supervisor, who's overseen 


the program since 2001, adds, "This 
weekend is geared toward kids 
learning to be in the outdoors and to 
be safe. It provides an opportunity 
for the moms and daughters to spend 
quality time learning together." 

The moms agree. One mom 
signed up this past August because, 
when she read the DGIF flyer her 
daughter brought home from a Girl 
Scout meeting, she thought it would 
be fun for them to do the activities to- 
gether. Joanna Dunevant, participant 

soon become obvious to campers and 
educators alike: When women mas- 
ter survival skills and challenges set 
before them, a sense of self-esteem 
and empowerment is realized. 

Long-time volunteer and archery 
instructor Jesse Ebron believes there 
are many benefits for all involved in 
the program. "What's amazing," 
says Ebron, "is the bond you see de- 
velop... and the light that comes on 
when participants experience suc- 
cess at something they didn't think 

When you learn to make a fire, you learn to take care of yourself. When you 
celebrate new skills, you do so loudly together! 

turned volunteer instructor, began 
her wildlife experiences at a BOW 
weekend she attended after her hus- 
band suggested she might enjoy it. 
She gravitated to the mother and 
daughter weekend when she wanted 
to share her newly found skills and 
interests with her niece. While there 
are many different reasons for at- 
tending, all seem to find what they 
come looking for — and more. Moth- 
ers who seek an opportunity to get 
closer with their daughters are not 

Daughters looking for friendship 
or fun find both. And while everyone 
arrives stispecting good times will be 
the constant, the more subtle benefits 

they could do. The moms seem to get 
their form down first, but then the 
kids get better faster. Things become 
a little competitive and that makes it 
fun. That's when you see that bond 
develop. They learn to trust their in- 

Nease, who returned this year as 
an instructor apprentice, agrees, 
adding, "No one wants to get beat by 
a 14-year-old! I try harder because it's 
competitive and fun. But one day 
Amber will beat me and she'll know 
she won. Even now she's routinely 
'picking up my trash.'" Nease contin- 
ues on a more serious note, stating, "I 
really believe being in nature pro- 
vides a sense of creativity and well- 

Top: Capturing memories is part of the 

camp experience. 

Above: Those smiles tell it all! 



being. There's something primal 
about knowing you can take care of 
yourself. I want to give those things 
to my daughter." 

That seems to be the consensus at 
camp. While the Virginia Reel dance 
is fun, the food great, and the chance 

khove: Experiences at camp allow you to set and conquer goals. 
Left: "Look at her go! If she can do it, I can, too!" 

to make new friends appreciated, it is 
the belief that you can master "what 
comes your way" that emerges as the 
most powerful force experienced and 
shared by both mother and daughter. 
It's a gift not easily captured by the 
camera, but it is there nonetheless. 

This Christmas when the album 
comes out and new pictures appear, 
Brenda and Judith will share their 
plans for their next special weekend 
together. Other moms, daughters, 
grandmas, and aunts will do the 
same. Perhaps one of tliem will again 
capture that elusive look of love that 
says: "I know who I am, I know what 
I can accomplish, and 1 know what I 
can become." Of course as they re- 
turn to the firing range the tone will 
quickly change. The smell of smoke 
and the scream, "Pull!" will bring 
that competitive spirit back like a 
shot. And at camp one thing's for 
sure: No one wants to get beat by 
their mom. H 


1 _^nfBH 

~ . .',i>.a.£. 

After everyone learns about the equip- 
ment and safety issues campers get out 
on the water to have fun and get wet. 

Gail Brozvn i> a retired teaelier and sehool ad- 




Stonecat Madtom 

Madtoms are small catfish- 
es of the genus Notunis, 
which includes 27 species 
that occur throughout the eastern 
United States and Canada. Of those, 
nine species are found in the mid-At- 
lantic region; six of those species 
occur in Virginia. Notiirus means 
"backtail," referencing the rear mar- 
gin of the adipose fin being attached 
to the caudal (tail) fin, a trait that is 
not present in other catfishes. The 
name "madtom" was coined by a bi- 
ologist (Jordan) in 1889, in describing 
the fish's erratic swimming behavior 
when startled. In Virginia they are 
often called "cat minnows," and are 

Story and illustrations 
by Spike Knuth 

in fact netted by bait dealers and fish- 
ermen (sometimes illegally) and 
used for bait, especially for small- 
mouth bass. Additionally, some are 
taken to be put in home aquariums. 

These catfish reach a maximum 
length of about 12 inches, although 
most barely reach four. All are scale- 
less and have four pairs of barbells. 
They also have pectoral and dorsal 
fin spines that are encased in a sheath 
containing mild venom. The rear 
edge of the pectoral spine is serrated 
or toothed. These spines can be ex- 
tended and held stiffly erect and 
locked into position, which provides 
an effective deterrent to predators 
and anyone who handles them. 

Stonecat Madtom 
(Noturus flainis) 

The stonecat madtom is widespread 
in eastern North America. In Vir- 
ginia, it is known only in the waters 
of the Tennessee drainage: Clinch 
River, Copper Creek, Little 

River, North Fork Holston River, Big 
Moccasin Creek, Laurel Creek, and 
lower South Fork Holston River. It 
has also been recently found in the 
Big Sandy drainage. 

Its head is broad and body slender 
and elongate. The dorsum (back or 
upper body) is slate-gray to olive- 
green, fading to yellow-olive sides 
and a white venter (underside). 
Stonecats average four to 9.5 inches 
in length. They occur in medium to 
large warm streams of moderately 
low gradient and favor riffles, runs, 
or rapids that are not too swift. Here 
they hide under or among rocks. 

Spawning probably takes place in 
April and May. The male guards the 
eggs and broods the young at first. 
The stonecat is a secretive fish and 
feeds at night on aquatic inverte- 
brates, immature insect larvae, 
mayflies, caddis flies, midge larvae, 
and occasionally, small fish. 

Some studies show that stonecats 
are a good indicator of smallmouth 
bass abundance. It's been found that 
where one is abundant, the other 
usually is too. Stonecats are a species 
of special concern, altliough they can 
be common in some pockets. 

Mountain Madtom 


Grow Wild! 

^na Other Liitle Known Bullneads 

Mountain Madtom 
(Notiinis clciitlicriis) 

The mountain madtom is a small, 
somewhat robust fish with a flat- 
tened head, measuring two to four 
inches. The head and back are dark 
brown to yellow-brown, fading to 
medium brown or gray-brown on the 
sides, which are mottled witli black- 

In Virginia, it is found in the North 
Fork Holston, Clinch, and Powell 
rivers, and lower Copper Creek — all 
of the Tennessee River drainage. 
Mountain madtoms inhabit the grav- 
el, rubble, and vegetation of riffles 
and runs of clear and warm, medium 
to large streams and rivers. They 
spawn in June and July, usually in 
cavities beneath flat rubble or in grav- 
el. Main foods include a variety of im- 
mature aquatic insects, which they 
feed upon primarily at night. 

Movmtain madtoms are proba- 
bly the most abundant of the 
small catfish in southwestern Vir- 
ginia. While it is common in favor- 
able habitats, it is rarely abundant. 


Yellowfin Madtom 

Yellowfin Madtom 


In Virginia, this three to four inch 
madtom is found only in Copper 
Creek in Russell and Scott counties, 
the lower Powell River, Lee County, 
and the upper Clinch River in Russell 
County. The head and body are most- 
ly pale yellow-brown to yellow-gray, 
with a slight pink cast and pale yellow 

Yellowfins live in calm, warm, 
clear, medium-sized streams and 
rivers of moderate gradient, especial- 
ly in pools and backwaters. They live 
under cover of logs, stocks, leaf litter, 
rocks, debris, and undercut banks. 

Spawning takes place in mid-May 
to mid-July in cavities beneath nibble. 

Like other madtoms, eggs are laid in 

clusters. They feed on a variety of 

benthic (bottom dwelling) insects. 

Yellowfins were thought to 

be extinct in 1969, but later found 

to be more abundant. They are 

considered rare, however, and 

listed as threatened both federally 

and in Virginia. 

Orangefin Madtom 
(Noturus gilbcrti) 

Orangefins are three to four inches in 
size. Their body is long and slim and 
they have a flattened, narrow head. 
They are mainly gray-brown dorsally 
with a pale whitish triangle on the 
upper comer of the caudal fin. The 
mid- and lower sides are pale gray to 
yellow-olive, sometimes with a pink- 
ish cast and a white underside. 

These little madtoms are generally 
found in small to large, moderate gra- 
dient streams in the mountains or 
upper Piedmont streams. They live in 
mocierate to strong runs and riffles 
with large gravel, Ribble, boulders, 
and other cover 

While their spawning habits have 
not been documented, conditions of 
species samples indicate that spawn- 
ing takes place in late April through 
June. They feed mainly at night on 
immature aquatic insects such as 
mayflies, caddis tlies, and niidges. 

Oran^efin Madtom 


lad pole Madtoi 


Orangefins are native to the 
Roanoke drainage above Salem, and 
the Dan and Mayo rivers. They have 
been introduced to the upper James 
River drainage and can be fovmd in 
Craig Creek and the Cowpasture 
River. They are uncommon to rare, 
and considered threatened. 

laapole Madtom 

This small, chubby madtom is tad- 
pole-shaped with a large belly and 
a large and broad adipose 
and tail combination. 
Color-wise, it is uni- . ' 

formly brown, -A. 

golden brown, 
or tan, and 
measures 2 to 
4.5 inches. 

The tadpole 
madtom resides 
in warm, quiet, 
creeks, streams, 
and rivers, espe- 
cially in backwa- 
ters. It is tolerant of Margino 
turbid water and often 
favors thick vegetation over mud 
and sand bottoms. Here, it hides 
under rocks and in decaying vegeta- 
tion, logs, and discarded trash. 

Spawning occurs mainly in June 
and July, in crevices of rocks and 
often even in cans, jars, or other con- 
tainers. They feed on crustaceans, im- 
mature aquatic insects, snails, algae, 
and small fishes. 


Tadpole madtoms are found in all 
major drainages that run into the At- 
lantic, and in Virginia they are found 
in the lower Piedmont and Coastal 
Plain, with the exception of the East- 
em Shore and Dismal Swamp. While 
abundant in certain.,areas, it is gener- 
ally rare or uncommoh:. 

or dark-brown. In some areas, margin- 
ed madtoms are covered with medi- 
um to dark brown-black spots. 

This madtom is found in low or 
moderate gradient sections of large 
creeks and rivers, occupying either 
hard or soft bottoms of pools, runs, 
and riffles. Spawning takes place in 
May and June beneath flat rocks in 
slow water above and below riffles. It 
feeds on ac^uatic insect larvae, with ter- 
restrial insects and fishes taken occa- 

Margined madtoms are our most 
common and widespread species in 
Virginia. They are found throughout 
the Atlantic Slope Basin and in the 
New River. The North Fork Holston 
River population is thought to have 
been introduced. 

Two other little known larger bull- 
heads that are found in streams and 
rivers are the flat bullhead and the 
snail bullhead. 


The flat bullhead is often called the 

"shoe head" bulUiead and measures 7 

to 11.5 inches in length. It's a stout 

bodied fish with a dark olive to 

medium-brown dorsum, 

with lower sides 

cream to white, 

mottled with 


Margined Madtom 
(Notunis insigiiis) 

The margined madtom is two to six 
inches long. The head and body is 
dark to medium brown, with an olive 
or pale yellow cast fading to sides 
that are medium to pale brown with 
an olive or yellow tint, and white un- 
dersides. The fins are edged in black 

Flat bullheads reside in the back- 
waters of large rivers but also in some 
lakes and ponds with mud, sand, and 
rocky bottoms. Little is known about 
spawning behavior in Virginia but 
North Carolina studies show that 
spawning occurs in June and July. Flat 
bullheads feed on aquatic inverte- 
brates, snails, and fish. 


'?!»*- 'V' 

They range from the Blue Ridge 
foothills to the lower Piedmont, ex- 
tending into the Coastal Plain; in par- 
ticular, the Roanoke and Chowan 
drainages. They are common to un- 
common in their range. 

Snail 5ullneaa 

(Amciiir us hr uncus) 

Snail bullheads measure 7 to 11.5 
inches in length. The back and sides 
are pale olive-brown to gray-brown, 
mottled lightly, with white under- 

They are believed to favor rocky 
portions of higher gradient streams, 
and occupy the pools and riffles with 
good current and soft bottoms. This is 
another fish that has not been studied 
and little is known of its spawning 
habits, which are believed to be simi- 
lar to the flat bullhead. Conditions of 

Hat bullhead' 

some captured fish indicate that 
spawning probably takes place in 
May and early June. Snail bullheads 
feed on insect larvae, snails, min- 
nows, filamentous algae and other 
aquatic animals. They are only found 
in lower reaches of the Dan River. L 

Spike Knuth is an avid naturalist and wildlife 
artist. For over 30 years his artzoork and writing 
have appeared hi Virginia Wildlife. He is a 
member of the Virginia Outdoor Writers Associ- 

Freshwater Fishes of Virginia by R. 
Jenkins and N. M. Burkhead is a goc 
resource for these species. 


Be Wild! Live Wild! Grow Wild! is a reg- 
ular feature that highlights Virginia's 
Wildlife Action Plan, which is designed 
to unite natural resources agencies, 
sportsmen and women, conservation- 
ists, and citizens in a common vision 
for the conservation of the Common- 
wealth's wildlife and habitats in which 
they live. To learn more or to become 
involved with this program visit: 


Snail Bullhead 

"ghia Department of 

Financial Sumn 

(July 1,200 


Mission Statement 

To manage Virginia's wildlife and inland fish 
to maintain optimum populations of all 
species to serve the needs of the Common- 
wealth; To provide opportunity for all to 
enjoy wildlife, inland fish, boating and 
related outdoor recreation and to work dili- 
gently to safeguard the rights of the people 
to hunt, fish and harvest game as provided 
for in the Constitution of Virginia; To pro- 
mote safety for persons and property in con- 
nection with boating, hunting and fishing; 
To provide educational outreach programs 
and materials that foster an awareness of 
and appreciation for Virginia's fish and 
wildlife resources, their habitats, and hunt- 
ing, fishing, and boating opportunities. 

License Sales: $21 ,639,671 

Revenue from the sale of hunting, 
fishing, and trapping licenses is the 
single largest source of funding for 
the agency and accounts for about 
41% of the Department's total rev- 
enue from operations. The Depart- 
ment currently sells approximately 
60 types of annual licenses in addi- 
tion to lifetime hunting and fishing li- 
censes. Lifetime license dollars are 
deposited into a separate endow- 
ment fund, with the income and prin- 
cipal to only be used to administer 
the lifetime license program and sup- 
port the Department's wildlife con- 
servation programs. 

Boat Registration and Titling: 

With about 252,000 registered motor- 
boats (propelled by machinery) in the 

Federal Aid 





License Sales 


Total Revenue from Operations: $52,684,924 

Commonwealth, the funds derived 
from boat registration and titling are 
used for the agency's boating efforts 
of boating safety education, boat reg- 
istration and titling, and boating law 
enforcement. Non-motorized boats 
(canoes, kayaks, sailboats, etc.) are 
not required to be registered in Vir- 

Interfund Transfers (net): 

Through the Appropriations Act 
(budget bill), the Department re- 
ceives revenue from the 2% Water- 
craft Sales and Use Tax on motorboat 
purchases and also a portion of the 
state sales tax on expenditures for 
hunting, fishiiig, and wildlife-related 

Other: $3,751,212 

Other income sources for the Depart- 
ment include Virginia Wildlife maga- 
zine subscriptions; receipts from the 
wildlife conservationist license plate 
series; timber sales from Depart- 
ment-owned lands; interest from 
cash balances in accounts; sales of 
merchandise; donations; and sales of 
the state migratory waterfowl stamp. 

Federal Aid: $11,854,081 

Federal funds come from a variety of 
designated funding sources, includ- 

The Federal Aid in Wildlife Restora- 
tion Act (popularly known as the 
Pittman-Robertson Act) funds are 
derived from an 11 percent federal 

Department Goals 


Provide for optimum popula- • Enhance opportunities for the en- 
tions and diversity of wildlife joyment of wildlife, inland fish, 

species and their habitats boating, and related outdoor 


3ame & Inland FIs 

ry Fiscal Year 2009 

June 30, 2009) 

excise tax on sporting arms, ammuni- 
tion, archery equipment and a 10 per- 
cent tax on handguns. 

The Federal Aid in Sport Fish 
Restoration Act (commonly referred 
to as the Dingell-Johnson/ Wallop 
Breaux Act) dollars are derived from 
federal excise tax on manufacturers 
of fishing tackle, duties on boats, and 
a motorboat fuels tax. 

The State and Tribal Wildlife Grant 
Program funds are from appropria- 
tions provided through the federal 
budget bill and are not dedicated tax 
funds. The program supports states' 
efforts that benefit wildlife and their 
habitats, including species that are 
not hunted or fished. The amounts 
may vary according to the appropria- 
tion in the federal budget. 

The Recreational Boating Safety 
(RBS) Grant Program is administered 
through the U.S. Coast Guard. The 
sources of money for this program 
are varied and include a tax on fuel 
used in boating and the allocation of 
revenues collected through amend- 
ments to the Dingell-Johnson /Wal- 
lop Breaux Act. The funds may be 
used to provide facilities, equipment, 
and supplies for boating safety edu- 
cation and for boating law enforce- 
ment. Acquisition, construction, and 
repair of public boating access sites 
used primarily by recreational 
boaters, in addition to a variety of 
other programs ranging from boat- 
ing patrol, search and rescue, boating 
safety inspections and marine casual- 
ty investigations, navigation aids and 
supporting boat registration and ti- 
tling programs are funded through 
this program. 










Total Operational Expenditures: $48,643,163 

Since funding sources support a range of programs, the Department uses a 
mission-focused budget divided into four functional areas: Recreation, Educa- 
tion, Environmental Diversity, and Administration. 

With the exception of the Recre- 
ation Boating Safety Grant Program, 
federal funds are primarily designat- 
ed for wildlife and fisheries manage- 
ment and cannot be used for law en- 
forcement efforts. 

Functional Areas 

Since funding sources support a 
range of programs, the Department 
uses a mission-focused budget divid- 
ed into four functional areas: Recre- 
ation, Education, Environmental Di- 
versity, and Administration. 

• The Environmental Diversity func- 
tional area is a set of programs de- 
signed to support the mission of the 
agency: "To manage Virginia's 
wildlife and inland fish to maintain 
optimum populations of all species to 
serve the needs of the Common- 
wealth." This is comprised of habitat 
and population management work 
done for game species such as deer, 
turkeys and quail and non-game 
species, including birds and reptiles 
and endangered species. 

• The Recreation functional area is a 
set of programs to support the mis- 

• Improve the understanding and 
appreciation of the importance of 
wildlife, inland fish, and their 

Promote safe and ethical conduct 
in the enjoyment of boating, hunt- 
ing, fishing, wildlife viewing, and 
related outdoor recreation 

Improve agency funding and 
other resources and effectively 
manage all resources and opera- 

sion of the agency: "To provide op- 
portunity for all to enjoy wildlife, in- 
land fish, boating and related out- 
door recreation and to work diligent- 
ly to safeguard the rights of the peo- 
ple to hunt, fish, and harvest game as 
provided for in the Constitution of 
Virginia." Efforts supported by this 
category include hatcheries, hunting, 
fishing and wildlife watching pro- 
grams, and the agency's law enforce- 
ment efforts. 

• The Education functional area is a 
set of programs to support the mis- 
sion of the agency: "To promote safe- 
ty for persons and property in con- 
nection with boating, hunting and 
fishing and to provide educational 
outreach programs and materials 
that foster an awareness of and ap- 
preciation for Virginia's fish and 
wildlife resources, their habitats, and 
hunting, fishing, arid boating oppor- 
tunities." This includes boating safe- 
ty education, hunter education, out- 
door skills education and public out- 
reach efforts such as Virginia Wildlife 
magazine and Project WILD. 

• The Administration functional area 
is a set of programs to support the 
goal of the agency: "To improve 
agency funding and other resources 
and the management and effective- 
ness of all resources and operations." 
This area covers Department-wide 
administrative activities that ensure 
compliance with procurement, ac- 
counting, technology and other poli- 
cies, and also includes acquisition 
and maintenance of facilities. 

Department Assets 

• Over 200,000 acres of land in 37 
wildlife management areas 

• 37 public fishing lakes 

• 215 public boating access facilities 

• 47 handicapped-accessible fishing 

• 8 fish culture stations 

• Statewide birding and wildlife 




Dam Safety 

Capital Programs are long-term construction projects, infra- 
structure improvements, land purchases, and infrastructure 
maintenance. The Department classifies these expenditures 
into three categories: Acquisitions, Dam Safety, and Steward- 
ship. Acquisitions include the purchase of land and other as- 
sociated costs such as titling, surveying, environmental stud- 
ies, and appraisals. Dam Safety is the cost associated with en- 
suring the Department's dams comply with federal and state 
safety standards. Stewardship is the cost associated with 
maintaining or improving the Department's infrastructure. 






Capital Program Revenues are federal grants and insurance 
recovery payments that are directly related to a capital project. 
The balance of the Department's capital expenditures is fund- 
ed using revenue from operations or funds from the Depart- 
ment's cash balance. 



Aj>ucJ(V^u^7!:<^t s ^out^aj 

/^ 7^<e C^^^/fv5o/7 

2>&(l-e./yi^e.r- \%y 200'S 

Z/lOj/e. -foi/nd it tti^(S. on /yjoi-e thon <Dn& oddasion 7!:/nal t/ie. AeSt 'ihinaS in /i/s are So/yr&T^i^y/eS tia/lt m 
■front erf /yte.'^ 3o/yi(s./houj^ XJ^St fai/ to t&doanize. t/ie/yj . 'TTiat SCenaj-io Cjsrtai n/y ^/cyed ocot in /»iy 
du(lJ( /i^/itinQ Season. 
My Stot/iet /laS hOfJ aC-deSS for s&/era/ years to a feuj s/ia//ouj y^ondS near one erf the /yiojor riVerS in den- 
tra/ Vir<jnia S cuater/ouj/ f/yujoy. l^e Set ^p in one orf the yonds a fez^o yearS />adk <VTd dO/yje up eMn/^y on 
dudk-S O/Tcl aeeSe) So/yjethna not UnUSUo/ ev'ert in the AeSt Spots. My brother hunted th<3i pond one /yjore 
ti/yie O/Td shot one or tcoo dud^S, Aut nothina to reoj/y aet e><dited a/>out. After that, uje loSt interest in the 
Spot arid i(ept /ooi(inQ around e/Se/A^here, Until coe had a//>7oSt do/>ip/ete/y foraotten a/>out it. 'That iS, unti/ 
/yy Arother dro/e Ay the ponds just a doup/e of days Aefore Christ/yfOS fast year. 

"//& daj/ed /yje i/yj mediately. " /he dudi^S O/yd aeeSe are loaded in th<^ /itt/e pond off the riVer! he Said. Xf it 
hadn t Aeen CJirist/yiaS Eve, uje ujou/d ho/e tried thej>7 the next /yrornina. ^e Aoth ho/e yoUno dhi/dren and 
tAjiVeSy hoiAjeVer, ortd ojou/d prefer to /ive to hu/it o/iother Sunrise tha/1 try to ao out on Christ /y?aS /yiornina. 
^e/udtant/y, oje p/a/ined the hunt for the /yiornina orf the 3(^h. 

'T~he f/y in the oint/yient orf the deal ojaS th<^ /W Arother had a// his in-/a(AjiS in toiAjn. So ifoje ujere aoina 
huntina, hiS paSS oUt of the hoUSe cuaS ^'^^ z'o ind/ude hiS tnjo ArotherS-in-ZauJ, neJther of ujho/yi had 
eVer A>een dud^ huntina Aefore. (genera/ /y, X O/y} si^eptida/- of huntina ujith net^j people, eSpedJa/ly neco peop/e 
idho ha/e neVer hunted ujoterfouj/ . But theSe ujere SpediaJ dirdU/>lSta/TdeS . V/is ArotherS-in-fa^Aj are nide 
enouah Q^S, a/id Sinde X dou/dn t Qo cuithout /yiy Arother, X dou/dn t <3o ujithout the/yj either. 

X felt a da^ious opti/>iiS/yi as />y father a/id X ujaited for ^y^y Ar est her s c^oup at the aate to the prop- 
erty the fo//oojinck /yrornina. X Ve /earned it S neVer a Qood idea to ast too e><dJted coheJi it do/yjeS to ojoter-fouj/ 
huntina in Vircvnia. iJuSt SedO/JSe the AirdS coere there yeSterd(^ doeSn t /y?ea/^ they iajI// Ae there today. Still, 
/yiayAe this ti/yje it toou/d pa/1 out. 

A^<s put out a SuAstantial spread ofdedays Surroundina the point inhere /yfy Arother had Seen /y?oSt of 
the dud^S a/id aeeSe dondentroted a /euj dcyS prior . Then toe tudi^ed in Aeh'^yJ the SeVero/ AusheS that fined 
the AanK arid dreated So/yje /yjOKeShift A/inds. A-^<s poured doffee fro/yj /yiy ther/yyoS arid Spent the ujoriina 
/yjinuteS Aefore Shootina ti/yje tryina to exp/ain to the ArotherS-in-/auj /ohajt they dou/d or dou/dn t eXpedt . 
BaSidM//y that Aoi/ed doujn to, 7>on t do anythina un/eSS toe teJ/ yoU to. 'That indludeS /yjot/ina, /oo^ina up, 
arid definitely, Shootina. X dou/d teJI they toere ujonderina ujhot the hedi^ they had aotten the/yiSeJveS into, 
Aut toe hc^ a reaJ dhande at a oood hunt here . 

Xf there toere any OUeStionS as to tohether there toere sti// Airds in the area, the anStoer da/yie shortly 
Aefore shootina ti/yje. 'Tea/ Auzzed US, /yjaj/ards dird/ed and /anded in the dedoys, and aadtoa//s AadJ^-peda/ed 
toithn readh of our aun Aarre/s. X dou/d on/y i/yracvne tohat the ttoo netodo/yjerS toere thn^na aS toe Sat and 
toaited, and ujaited, and toaited for the dJod/<C to turn to /eaa/ ti/yie, tohisperina as /oud/y as toe dou/d, 2>on t 

f^na//y it arrived. The fve of us stood si /yju/taneous/yjust /yjinuteS aftertoard and fo/ded thtee aadtoa//s 
that had a/ided o/er at aAout ten yards. The shootina stayed hot for another \6 or 20 /yjinuteS, durina tohidh 
ti/>7e toe pidi^ed Up a /itt/e Short orf a doZen dud/(S . 
'Trie ArotherS-i n-/aio toere d/ear/y hOi/ina a pretty darn aood ti/y?e. 

U^e heard the first f/ia/rt ofaeeSe around % a^yi . 
'They dO/yie on a Strina to the Spread. Vo dird/ina, 
f/arin^, or hesitandy toith this Aatdh. Of the first 
eJaht that aot toithin ranoe, on/y four /eft. 
(Sroup after aroup shotoed up /i/(e that for an 
hour So that toe needed iust one aooSe to 



do/yip/ete our /i/y)it Ay <j a^^. My father hadn t 

Aeen aettina ouite aS /ytUdh Shootina on hiS end, So the reSt of 
US un/oaded and sat toatdhina and toajtina for hi/*! to fi// our 
/i/yfit. A^<e didn t toait /ona. "The 7aSt cy-oup do/y/ejust /i((e the frSt. 
As they Aan/(ed in a/er the dedoys fro/^ the /eft, /yjy father stood 
and fo/ded the /aSt one of the Aundh- ^e /yjiaht ha/e {;i//ed /yjore 
dudks had toe stayed Aut the toind toaS dyina and the sun, aettina hiah. 
for ondje X toou/d Ae ho/yre Aefore pro/>iiSed . 

And for the ArcstherS-in-/a(o, it toaS not a Aad first day of toaterfoto/ina 
X hope toe didn t Spoi/ the/yj too aood. 


2009-2010 Outdoor 
Calendar of Events 

Unless otherwise noted, for current 
information and registration on 
workshops go to the "Upcoming 
Events" page on our Web site at or call 804- 

December 4: Turning a New Leaf, 
Washington, DC, for landscaping 
professionals. For more information: or 
call (443)482-2156. 

December 18-19: Youth Deer Hunting 
Worl<shop, Claytor Lake State Park. 
Ages 12 to 17. Muzzleloading 
firearms only are allowed. 

January 14, 16, 21, 23, 26, 2010: Learn 
to Use Your Digital Camera, with 
Lynda Richardson at the Lewis Gin- 
ter Botanical Garden, Richmond. For 
more information: www.lewisginter 
org or call (804) 262-9887, ext. 322. 

January 30, 2010: Winter Wildlife Festi- 
val, Virginia Beach. For more infor- 
mation, contact Jeff TroUinger at D 



"Tell you the truth, I don't know 
what it is." 

Christmas Bird Count 

by Jeff TroUinger 

The Christmas Bird Count (CBC) is 
an annual bird census performed 
throughout the Americas. It is the 
world's longest-running bird survey, 
having started on Christmas Day 
1900 with 28 observers. Designed 
around a 15-mile diameter "count 
circle," volunteers count all birds that 
they see within their assigned por- 
tion of the circle on one designated 
day, which always falls between 14 
December and 5 January. Some vol- 
unteers begin as early as just after 
midnight to count owls, which can be 
difficult to find during daylight. Typ- 
ically, at least ten volunteers count a 
circle, but the number can reach into 
the hundreds. Here in Virginia, about 
42 circles typically are surveyed each 
year; not all circles are counted every 
year. These circles cover most regions 
of the state, but are fewest in the Pied- 
mont. Volunteer ttirnout is especially 
heavy in Northern Virginia and in 
Shenandoah National Park. 

CBC data are used by researchers 
to study bird populations across 
time, both in numbers and distribu- 
tion. They have been compared witli 
other data sets to determine the effec- 
tiveness of different survey types. 
CBC data also have been used to in- 
vestigate community dynamics of 
species, such as winter bird diversity 
in different areas or fluctuations in 
populations paired to weather condi- 
tions. The data collected by volun- 
teers every year are invaluable in that 
they contribute to the longest run- 
ning and most geographically broad 
data set in ornithology. This allows 
researchers to monitor population 
trends and distribution over long 
time periods, across vast distances. 

If you'd like to participate in one 
of Virginia's Christmas Bird Counts, 
go to the Audubon CBC Web site at 
http: / / / Bird / cbc / 
and get involved! D 

by Beth Hester 

Flowers and Herbs of 
Early America 

by Lawrence D. Griffith, 
with color photographs by 
Barbara Temple Lombardi 
2008, The Colonial Williamsburg 
Foundation /Yale University Press 

I was nine years old when 1 made my 
first trip to Colonial Williamsburg. To 
tliis day I recall the mixed scents of 
bayberry soap, hand-dipped can- 
dles, neatly trimmed boxwood 
hedges, and assorted plants and 
flowers that were so in evidence that 
hot July morning. As 1 slowly trolled 
each side lane, taking everything in, 1 
felt transported, enchanted, and also 
strangely transformed. 

How on earth, I wondered, could 
anyone manage to reconstruct and 
restore large, historic areas? How 
could a scientist find some old, rusty 
fixture and decide it belonged to a 
window shutter, or a horse-drawn 
carriage? And ... importantly, how 
could anyone know what plants the 
early colonists cultivated, and what 
their gardens contained? 

Fknvers and Herbs of Early 
America, penned by plant historian 
and master gardener Lawrence Grif- 
fith, curator of plants for Colonial 
Williamsburg, begins to answer 
some of these questions. 

It is the literary manifestation of 
Griffith's years' long exploration into 
the flowers and herbs known to have 
been in Williamsburg and coastal 
Virginia during the 18th century. 



Combining scholarship with hands- 
on spadework, Griffith painstakingly 
sought in his own words "to grow 
and identify viable plants that were 
accurate to the colonial period ... I 
concentrated on flowers and herbs 
that when used in a mixed palette, 
would prove amenable to being 
sown directly into garden flower 
beds, show promise in germinating 
early, provide extended bloom, and 
display a propensity to produce and 
abundantly scatter seed, thereby per- 
petuating themselves and obviating 
a need for a greenhouse." 

Divided into two sections — 
Flowers and Herbs — each of the fifty- 
eight engaging plant narratives doc- 
uments the species of plant, and its 
uses. For the colonists, flowers and 
herbs were utilized not only as a di- 
rect source of food, but also for their 
varied medicinal qualities such as 
that of purple coneflower. Flowers 
like sunflower and ragged robin 
were used to attract wildlife, and a 
good many other plants and herbs 
such as calendula, rosemary, and 
sage were used to season and en- 
hance the flavor of both farmed meat 
and wild game. 

The entries are accompanied by 
lovely period engravings and wood- 
cuts, Barbara Lombardi's majestic 
photographs, and helpful sidebar in- 
formation on the plant's habits, natu- 
ral range, and tips for cultivation. 
This important book is a must-have 
for any gardener or lover of Virginia 
history. It is both an aesthetic pleas- 
ure, and a historic treasure. D 

Buv Your Lifplime License 
' l-86(i-721-6911 


From the Editor: 

Thanks to the many employees of 
the Department who volunteered 
their time and expertise to review 
articles during 2009. Your timely 
assistance helped to keep the 
magazine on track each month 
and is sincerely appreciated! 

United States Postal Service 

statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation 

Publication 77t/e.- Virginia Wildlife 

Publication Number: 0042-6792 

f*ng Date; 10-05-2009 

Issue Frequency: Monthly 

Number of Issues Published Annually: 1 2 

Annual Subscription Price: $ 1 2 .95 

Complete Mailing Address: 401 West Broad Street, Riclimond, VA 2 32 30 

Contact Person: Sally Mills, Editor, Telephone 804-367-0486 

Full Names of Complete IVIailing Addresses of Publisher, Editor, and Managiiig Editor: 5a\\v M\\ls:V[rgmiaWi]d\'\ie, 

4010 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23230. 

Owner: Virginia Department of Came and Inland Fisheries, 401 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23230 

Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and Other Security Holders Owning or Holding I percent or More of Total Amount 

of Bonds. Mortgages or Other Securities: None 

Tax Status: Has Not Changed During Preceding 1 2 Months 

Pu6//ca(/on 7(t/e. Virginia Wildlife 

Issue Data for Circulation Data Below: September 2009 

Extent and Nature Of Circulation Avg No. Copies Each Issue No. Copies of Single Issue 

During Preceding 1 2 Months Published Nearest to Filing Date 

Total Number of Copies 

Mailed Outside-CountvF^id Subscriptions 

Stated on PS Form 3541 

Mailed In-County Raid Subscriptions Stated on PS Form 3541 

Sales Through Dealers and Carriers, Street Vendors, 

Counter Sales, and Other Non-USPS F^id Distribution 

F^id Distribution by Other Classes Through USPS 

Total Ffeid Distribution 

Free or Nominal Rate Outside-County Included on 
PS Form 3541 

Free or Nominal Rate In-County Included on 

PS Form 3541 

Free or Nominal Rate Copies Mailed at 

OtherClasses Through USPS 

Free or Nominal Rate Distribution Outside the Mail 
Total Free or Nominal Rate Distribution 
Total Distribution 
Copies Not Distributed 

Percent F^id and/or Requested Circulation 




























GuTDaoji CATAiaa 


Limited Edition 
Virginia Wildlife 
Collector's Knife 

Our 2009 Collector's knife has once again been customized by Buck Knives and fea- 
tures a wild turkey in full strut. The elegant, solid cherry box features a forest scene. 
Knives and boxes, made in USA. 


$85.00 each (plus $7.25 S&H) 


Virginia V[/ildlife 

Collector's Knife 

Produced by Buck Knives, this knife features a red-tailed hawk engraving, augmented 
by a natural woodgrain handle and gold lettering. A distinctive, solid cherry box features 
birds of prey. 

Item # VW-408 $90.00 each (plus $7.25 S&H) 

Find Game is an interactive Web- 
based map viewer designed by the 
Virginia Department of Game and 
Inland Fisheries to provide better 
and more current information 
about hunting land location and ac- 
cess in Virginia. Find Game allows 
users to map hunting areas by loca- 
tion and/or by game species, along 
with hunting quality by species, land 
manager contact information, site 
description, facilities available, access 
information and associated Web 
links. To learn more about Find 
Game, visit 

It's once again time to purchase a 
Virginia Wildlife calendar — a thought- 
ful holiday gift that's still a bargain at 

$10 each. 

As always, the calendar features 
spectacular photography and useful 
information to the outdoors enthusiast, 
including wildlife behavior, hunting 
seasons, favorable hunting and fishing 
times, state fish records, and more! 

Quantities Are Limited, 
So Order Yours Today. 

Make your check payable to 
"Treasurer ofVirginia" and send to: 
Virginia Wildlife Calendar, 
P.O. Box 11 104, 
Richmond, Virginia 23230-1 1 04. 

To pay by VISA or MasterCard, you may order on our se- 
cure site. Please allow 4 to 6 weeks for delivery. 







Loggerhead (2 words) 


Poisonous tree; carrot 


Dead, rotten flesh 

family herb 


Leaves, leafage 


Pelt, skin 


Thrush family bird 


Oyster grounds 


Dove soft cry 


Fish color marking 


Type of tide 


Wildlife pictures 


Piedmont area river 


Star watcher gear 


Kill a deer 




Gun discharge tube 


Animal gut, intestines 


Kayak maneuver-360 


Afire, ablaze 



Water mammal nostril 


Gnaw or chew 


Shell force into target 


Dec. holiday cactus 


Brown ; mockingbird 


Winter boat hazard 


(2 words) 


Meadows wildlife 


Animal ID ring 



Rail family waterfowl 


Batten down boat 


Tree rings reveal it 


Conservation officer nab 


Small shad-like fish 





by Lynda Richardson 

Happy Holiday Gift Ideas 

rhe month of giving is upon us 
and with that comes the frantic 
search for just the right presents for 
friencis and family. If one of your gift 
recipients is a photographer, I have a 
few ideas you might want to consider. 

Photographers who use digital 
SLR cameras usually need something 
to clean their camera's sensors. For 
this I would recommend the Lens Pen 
Combo with a Giottos Rocket Air 
Blower for $36.95. I would also rec- 
ommend buying it through Art Mor- 
ris, as he includes a detailed instruc- 
tion sheet on how to properly clean 
your sensor. For more information, go 
to Art Morris's Web site at www.bird or directly to 
https:/ / /shop 
/ item.aspx?itemid==250. 

After teaching workshops this 
past summer and fall, several older 
students mentioned having trouble 
getting down to ground level because 
of achy knees and backs. What I sug- 
gested was that they try a right angle 
finder. My right angle finder (well, I 
am older) is the Canon Right Angle 
Finder C for $179.95. The Angle Find- 
er C lets you adjust the viewing angle 
while also providing a L25x to 2.5x 
changeable magnification. Provided 
with built-in variable diopter correc- 
tion, it is also supplied with Finder 
Adapters ED-C and ED-D to fit any 
Canon EOS camera. For more infor- 
mation, call (800) 622-4987 or go to B 
& H's Web site at http:/ / / c / search?Ntt=canon 

The Pro Optic Right Angle Finder 
II is compatible with most film anci 
digital SLR cameras and features 
diopter correction with a range of + / - 
4, Ix and 2.5x dual magnification set- 
tings and full 360-degree viewfinder 
rotation. List Price: $69. Contact Ado- 
rama, (800) 223-2500, 

A photographer can always use 
some extra LCD screen protectors. 

Finding the perfect gift will make your loved ones 
happy. FLASH wasn't into camera gear but loved 
his new collar '- Lynda Richardson 

Check out Hoodman's, (800) 818- 
3946, where a package of 12 sells for 
$10.99. Different sizes are available, / products. 

You also might consider giving 
the gift of education. There are hvm- 

dreds of wonderful photography 
workshops out there that your fa- 
vorite photographer might enjoy. In 
2010, 1 will be teaching a wide variety 
of workshops throughout the state, 
starting in Riclimond at Lewis Ginter 
Botanical Garden, www.lewisgin (look imder Adult Education), 
and the University of Richmond 
(look under the School of Continuing 
/ personal / film-photo / courses, 
html. You can also find out more in- 
formation about my workshops at 

Now you can scratch at least one 
person off your list! Happy Holidays 
and Happy Shooting! ! ! ^ 

You are invited to submit one to five of your 
best photographs to "Image of the Month," Vir- 
ginia Wildlife Magazine, P.O. Box 11104, 4010 
West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23230-1104. 
Send original shdes, super high-quality prints, 
or high-res jpeg, tiff, or raw files on a disk and 
include a self-addressed, stamped envelope or 
other shipping method for return. Also, please 
include any pertinent information regarding 
how and where you captured the image and 
what camera and settings you used, along with 
your phone number. We look forward to seeing 
and sharing your work with our readers. 







i 2t.( l«,/m'JU Ja 



'■ A -m 


"■ w 

Congratulations to Bob Peace of Williamsburg foi his lovely photograph of a male ruby-throated 
hummingbird photographed from his backyard deck. Canon 40D digital SLR camera, 400mm lens, 
1 . 4X extender, ISO 1 600, l/2700th, fl 0. 0. As colorful and sparkly as a Christmas ornament! 



by Ken and Maria Perrotte 

Get Wild with Holiday Mors D'oeuvres 

gW ur holiday parties have earned a reputation for being a 
\/ little wild. People come to expect it. There'll usually be 
platters with various hors d'oeuvres created with an assort- 
ment of vdld game, birds and fish. 

We like to enjoy the party, too, so we want to keep it sim- 
ple with a combination of do-ahead and easy preparation 
hors d'oeuvres. Here are a few of the easiest and tastiest. 

Cheesy Venison Sausage Dip 

(How easy is this.?) 

1 lb Velveeta 

1 lb ground venison sausage 

1 can Rotel tomatoes 

Cook and crumble sausage in frying pan and set aside. Cut 
cheese product into 1-2 inch squares, melt in microwave. Stir 
in sausage and tomatoes and heat for another couple of min- 
utes until hot. Serve v^ath tortilla chips. This simple recipe 
may be prepared ahead of time up to point of melting cheese. 
Of course, you wrill have had to have made some nicely spiced 
venison sausage at some point prior to this or had your veni- 
son processor make some for you. Many do. Sausage making 
is another art unto itself, one we highly recommend learning, 
but that's another wald game lesson. 

Venison & Mushroom Empanadas 

For the pastry: 
1 1/2 cups flour, plus flour for dusting 
10 tablespoons butter 
8 ounces cream cheese 

For the filling: 
zVi tablespoons olive oil 

pound ground or minced venison 

cups finely chopped portabella or shiitake mushrooms 

garlic minced cloves 

cup finely chopped onions 

teaspoon Herbs de Provence (typically a thjnne, savory, 

marjoram, rosemary, fennel and sage blend that's 

heavy on thyme and marjoram) 
1 tablespoon-plus brandy 
5 teaspoons cream 

Salt and pepper to taste 

Cut butter and cream cheese into 1-inch pieces. Place in food 
processor with flour and process until dough is mixed and 
forms into a ball. Refrigerate for about 15 or 20 minutes 
while making filling. If preferred, commercial frozen pastry 
dough may be used. 



Heat oil over medium flame in skillet and add meat, 
onion and garlic. Cook for about a minute and add mush- 
rooms. Cook until meat is browned, vegetables are soft. Add 
brandy and herbs and cook for about a minute. Add cream 
and salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat. 

Roll out dough on floured cutting board to a thickness of 
about Ys inch or slightly less. Cut out three Vi inch circles. A 
large glass works well for this. Place about Vi to % tablespoon 
filling onto each dough circle and fold over, making 
turnovers. Press together with tines of a fork and prick the top 
of the turnover vwth the fork. At this point, the turnovers may 
be frozen for up to 1 month in a freezer bag. Bake on parch- 
ment paper lined cookie sheet at 400° for about 15 minutes 
(20 if frozen) or until golden browm. 

Venison London Broil Roll-Ups 

Venison bottom round roast 

Montreal steak seasoning 

Fresh asparagus spears 
4 teaspoons Mayonnaise 
4 teaspoons Creole or spicy mustard 
1 teaspoon Horseradish 

Season venison bottom round with Montreal steak seasoning. 
Roast in oven at 325° until medium rare to medium. Cool, re- 
frigerate and when chilled, slice as thin as possible. Blanch as- 
paragus in boiling water for one to two minutes. Cool and cut 
in half or to fit meat slices. Mix mayonnaise, mustard and 
horseradish. (The amount of sauce can be adjusted based on 
size of roast, keeping proportions the same.) Spread each slice 
v«th sauce and wrap around asparagus spear. Meat, asparagus, 
and sauce may be prepared a day ahead, refrigerated separately 
and assembled just before serving. 

Smoked Trout Spread 

Rainbow trout whole, cleaned 

Lemon pepper seasoning 


Old Bay seasoning 

Herbs for garnish, optional 

Season trout with lemon pepper and smoke or grill. When 
cool, pick meat off bones and combine with enough mayon- 
naise to form a spreadable consistency. Season to taste with 
Old Bay. Garnish with parsley or dill. Serve with crackers. May 
be made a day ahead and stored in airtight container in refrig- 
erator. D 



Index to Virginia Wild life 

2009 Volume 70, Numbers 1 -1 2 


Amazing Journeys, Knuth Aug., p. 24 

Madtoms and Other Little Known Bullheads, Knuth . Dec, p. 22 

Miracles in a Spring Pool, Knuth May, p. 1 8 

Our Not-So-Common Turtles, Knuth Jun., p. 1 6 

Secretive Little Fur Balls, Knuth Nov., p. 22 

The Fish Ducks, Knuth Feb., p. 21 

Vireos of Virginia, Knuth Jul., p. 25 

Virginia's Blackbirds, Knuth Oct., p. 24 

Winter Nomads, Knuth Jan., p. 1 8 


Green Boating, Neely Jun., p. 1 2 

It you don't have a good day trailering. Guess Sept., p. 33 

MAYDAY!, Guess Aug., p. 32 

Myths and Facts About Boating, Guess Oct., p. 33 

That's Not Good, Guess jun., p. 35 

There's a Storm A-brewin', Guess Jul., p. 34 

Thinking Back, Guess May, p. 32 

What a Calm Night to be So Rough, Guess Apr., p. 34 


2008 Angler Hall of Fame June, p. 30 

2008 Angler of the Year June, p. 32 

A River for All Seasons, Clarkson Aug., p. 4 

Angling on the Nation's River, Montgomery Sept., p. 8 

Blue Cat Central, McGlade Apr., p. 4 

Celebrating the Art of Custom Rods, Hester Dec, p. 12 

Chief Charlie's Kids, Byrd Apr., p. 28 

Fishing with a Passion, Shepherd Dec, p. 14 

Fishology for Kids, Jones May, p. 4 

LakeCohoon's Bowfin Bonanza, McGlade Oct., p. 14 

Motts Run's Monster Pike, McGlade Aug., p. 20 

Mystery of the Saint Marys, Ross Dec, p. 4 

Night Fishing for Bass, Almy Aug., p. 12 

Northern Virginia's "Other" Fishery, McGlade Jul., p. 14 

Skinny Water Fishing, Petrocci Sept., p. 20 

Smallmouth FHeaven, Montgomery Jul., p. 4 

Tomorrow's Anglers, Montgomery May, p. 27 

Unveiling Natural Wonders at Fish Camp, Beasley . . . Nov., p. 1 4 


A Duck Hunter's Journal, Clarkson Jan./Nov./Dec 

Dusting Clay at N.A.S. Oceana, Hester Aug., p. 8 

Heyday Trapping Tales, Puckett Jan., p. 14 

Hunting For Permission, Ingram Oct., p. 1 8 

Hunting Incidents, Then and Now, Dodson Nov., p. 26 

Improving the Hunt for Grouse, Ingram Dec, p. 8 

it Takes a Poacher, Perrotte Nov., p. 9 

It's Never Too Late, Badger Feb., p. 1 

Marsh Madness, Hart Sept., p. 4 

Mountain Mallards, Clarkson Nov., p. 4 

Time to Take a Kid Hunting, Ingram Nov., p. 16 

Turkey Talk, Perrotte Apr., p. 1 2 

Upland Game BirdTrail, /ones &Sfa/5f Feb., p. 17 

VDHA Youth Hunt, Perrotte Oct., p. 22 

Why Squirrels?, Clarkson Sept., p. 12 

Wroblick's Huntin' House, Turner Feb., p. 13 


Annual Photography Contest Showcase March 

Beneath the Rocks, Brown May, p. 28 

Clamming with Brant, Badger Oct., p. 4 

Down on the Chick, Trammell Jun., p. 4 

EngravingTheir Niche, /ones Jan., p. 4 

Financial Summary, Fiscal Year 2009 Deep. 26 

Food for Body and Mind, Brown Sept., p. 1 6 

Goose Patrol, Clarkson Jun., p. 25 

Mothers & Daughters Bond Outdoors, Brown Dec, p. 1 8 

Off the Leash, Jones Aug./Sept./Oct./Nov. 

Quincy Lands at Raptor Center, Byrd Jul., p. 13 

Red Oak Quail Take Flight, Brown Oct., p. 12 

SaxisMarsh: A Place of Uncommon Bounty, Grey Jul., p. 8 

Scounting + Virginia Naturally Schools = Fun!, 

Brown Apr., p. 26 

Talking Stick, A4;7/s Jan., p. 34 

The "Go Green" Tream, Brown Feb., p. 26 

The Path to Stewardship, Brown Jan., p. 22 

The Sporting Life of Carol Lueder, Hester Jan., p. 26 

Unexpected Harvests, Hester Apr., p. 1 7 

We Are Home, Riner Feb., p. 28 


April Showers Bring... May Flowers!, Richardson . . . . May, p. 34 

Be a Deer and Be My Valentine!, Richardson Feb., p. 34 

Calling All Birds, Richardson Jun., p. 34 

Don't Be Afraid to Flash Outdoors, Richardson Jul., p. 35 

Focus in on Depth-of-Field, Richardson Sept., p. 32 

Happy Holiday Gift Ideas, Richardson Dec, p. 33 

Portable Hard Drives Can Save The Day, 

Richardson Aug., p. 33 

Sometimes I Don't Want to Take Any Pictures, 

Richardson Oct., p. 34 

This is Not Disneyland, Richardson Nov., p. 34 

Trout and About, Fishing With Your Digital Camera, 

Richardson Jan., p. 33 

Whose Digital Photograph IsThis?, Richardson Apr., p. 33 


A Stewardship Legacy, Majarov Apr., p. 8 

A Fundamental Freedom, Funk May, p. 9 

Be a Habitat Partner, Heiser Apr., p. 22 

Beekeeping 1 01 , A4;7/s May, p. 22 

Changing Landscapes, Changing Lives, Verner Aug., p. 1 6 

Discover Our Wild Side, Steger Sept., p. 24 

eBird and the Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail 

Brown Nov., p. 20 

Making a Difference for Wildlife, Ingram Jun., p. 8 

Partnership on the James, Majarov Jun., p. 20 

Pursuing an American Dream, Shepherd Feb., p. 4 

Rock Solid Conservation, Mathews Jul., p. 22 

Saving Virginia's Bluebirds, Majarov May, p. 14 

Striving for a Healthier Herd, Clarkson Oct., p. 8 

Up Close with the Nation's Symbol, Booth Jul., p. 1 8 

Where Eagles Soar, Booth Jan., p. 9 


Bacon-Wrapped Dove Breasts, Perrotte Sept., p. 34 

Brie Stuffed Quail, Perrotte Jun., p. 33 

Charcoal Roasted Whole Rockfish, Perrotte May, p. 33 

Get Wild with Holiday Hors D'oeuvres, Perrotte. . . . Dec, p. 34 

Hearty Venison Pot Roast, Perrotte Jan., p. 32 

Hooking Into Some Blues, Perrotte Jul., p. 33 

Northern Necker Duck Gumbo, Perrotte Feb., p. 33 

RackofVenison and Baby Portabellas, Perrotte Oct., p. 32 

Snakehead: It's What's For Dinner, Perrotte Aug., p. 34 

Stuffed Wild Turkey Breasts, Perrotte Nov., p. 33 

Wild Turkey Jambalaya, Perrotte Apr., p. 32 

Magazine subscription-related calls only 1-800-7 10-9369 

Twelve issues for just $1 2.95! 

All other calls to (804) 367- 1 000 

Visit our Web site at 

This Holiday Season 

Give The Gift That Will Be ErUoyed 

-^ All Year Long 

ViRGiraA Wildlife Magaziine 

For a limited time only you can give Virginia Wildlife as 
a gift to your family and friends for only $ 10.00 each. 
That's a savings of almost 80% off the regular cover pricel 
This special holiday offer expires January 3 1 , 20 1 0. 

Simply send us the full name and address of the person 
or persons to v/hom you would like to send a subscription. 

All orders must mention code # U9C4 and be prepaid by 
check, payable to Treasurer of Virginia. Mail to Virginia 
Wildlife Magazine, P.O. Box 1 1 104, Richmond. VA 23230- 
I 1 04. Please allow 6-8 weeks for delivery. 

Remember, a subscription to Virginia Wildlife maV^esa 
great gift that will be enjoyed all year long!